The exchange started in 1987 as a cooperation between Industrial Engineering and Management at Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, and University of California, Berkeley.
Hans Björnsson, emeritus in Systems management at Chalmers as well as former professor at UC Berkeley and Stanford, was central in shaping and developing the exchange. Originally the exchange consisted of two obligatory Chalmers courses at UC Berkeley, customized for students at IE&M. From 1996 one of the two courses was taken at Stanford. They were meant to complement the IE&M program and the students read the same courses.
Since 2017 Marcus Holgersson has become head responsible for the exchange and the students now take their courses solely at UC Berkeley. Holgersson is currently a researcher and teacher at the division of Entrepreneurship and Strategy at Chalmers and has a background as visiting researcher at Stanford och UC Berkeley.
Holgersson has developed the program so that the students are formally registered as students at UC Berkeley. This gives them the freedom to choose courses freely from the wide selection offered by the university. This also means that the members of the Berkeley committee can apply for accommodation at campus and are granted access to the plethora of activities arranged every week at the university area.
Every student chooses two courses from Berkeley's summer offerings (so called Summer Sessions) and Chalmers pays the tuition fee. The courses should together equal 6-7 units. These may be courses otherwise not found in a master's program at IE&M provided that the student can justify their choices with their future career role.
UC Berkeley Summer Sessions is comprised of five sessions A, B, C, D and E. The sessions extend over four, six, eight or ten weeks. Current dates may be found at Berkeley's web page. So far the exchange has meant that the Chalmers students are required to be present between 9-12 June (about one week before session C begins) and 8-12 August.